The Words That We Use by Michael Healy

The Words That We Use by Michael Healy

The Words That We Use

How the Language we speak evolves?

I was sitting relaxing, at peace in our Lounge,

When in came two happy Grandchildren

One said to the other ‘oh yep’ and I said,

I think it is ‘yes’ that you mean.

The answer I got came as quite a surprise

Not that I minded, with those cheeky blue eyes!


‘No one speaks like you, Grandpa’

‘No one uses your words’

‘Do you think that is really so?’ (I am surprised),

It does sound somewhat absurd,

But then I know I say ‘it is not,’ instead of saying ‘it aint’,

and ‘how do you do’ ‘and not ‘aye up’ when I am greeting my friends again.

Apparently in the Twenty-Teens, English is not used my way.


When I was your age we were taught elocution,

Which showed us all how to speak.

But I guess what it did to the words we then used

           Was make us all sound the same squeak.


‘The real thing,’ I tell my Grandchildren,

             ’Is to understand what we each mean.’

‘Communication is what it’s about,’

           ‘And you do really know what I mean’…..I doubt.

                                                 Michael Healy


One thought on “The Words That We Use by Michael Healy

  1. Thank you for this, Michael. I can picture the scene in some living room on a Sunday afternoon with the grandchildren chatting to granddad; or should I say, trying to chat to each other across the generational divide.
    This is a very good poem that looks at the confusion that can arise as a result of a lack of communication. Happily, this one is viewed from a humourous perspective and is all the more delightful for that.

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